Commuters decry Asaba- Ughelli road deplorable state
By Nosa Akenzua, Asaba
Commuters on Asaba-Ughelli road in Delta state have decried its deplorable state as well as alleged extortion by policemen on the road, noting that the situation might lead to deaths if repairs were not effected.
The alleged extortion by police, according to the travelers who spoke through one William Etus, Thursday, to journalists in Asaba, had further worsened the problems on the road.
They blamed the State Ministry of Works for its neglect of the road, saying that the ministry ought to have done the needful by ensuring that such a roads as Ughelli- Asaba-Ogwashi Uku-Isheagu, among others, were regularly maintained, adding that the Isheagu axis was partially tarred while the other half of the road was only sand filled with sand just like Ibusa, left open with sand without concrete and coal tar.
The road users claimed that traveling on the road at night remained a big risk, despite the presence of Policemen with AK47 rifles dangling by their sides but who are only interested in the N200.00 and sometimes N500,00 they extorted from travelers under the guise of Operation Stop and Search order of the Inspector General of Police (IGP).
“Delta state is an oil producing state and we ought to be showing the other less endowed states how best to keep our internal roads properly maintained,” said a traveler, who also disclosed that several lives had been lost on the deplorable Ogwashi Uku to Ibusa road, with many unauthorized speed breakers which had made easy movement on the road difficult.
“From Kwale to Ossisa, the road is passable, with some portions yet to be filled with sand and tar,” he said, advising car owners to drive with care to avoid accident.
Asaba Ughelli road needs an urgent resurfacing for travelers to have smooth journeys and avoid mishaps.
Investigations also revealed that from Bomadi to Orhoro road, the only road that connects the main East – West road, is a death trap as only a portion of it is tarred with other portions dotted with potholes which sometimes make drivers to swerve into the bush in a bid to avoid accident..
In a swift reaction, the State Commissioner for Works, Chief Auguoye James said that the state government was working hard to alleviate the hardship encountered by travelers and others on those roads.
He appealed to the road users to exercise patience as the Okowa-led administration was committed to providing good roads in the state.
On his part, the state Commissioner of Police, Hafiz Muhammed Inuwah dispelled the allegations of extortion on the roads against the Police as untrue, adding that any Policeman caught for extortion would be dismissed. He called on the people to prove their allegations.